tropical hummingbird cake

A few years ago I made a version of this cake but I found it too sweet, so I decided to remake the cake reducing the quantity of sugar.

I made the cake early one Sunday morning; I hadn't slept well and I was tired. I tasted the batter before I spooned it into the tin and found it not quite sweet enough so I added an extra tablespoon of sugar. 

It wasn't until the cake was in the oven and I was doing the washing up that I discovered the sugar I'd carefully weighed and measured the night before still sitting on the kitchen table. Oh dear.

It was too late to do anything about the cake so I hoped that the natural sweetness of the banana and pineapple in the batter would be enough to make the cake palatable but just in case I slathered the cake with loads of cream cheese icing.

Here's the recipe for you which makes a 18 cm cake. To make a 23cm cake just double all the ingredients but the baking time remains the same. For all my recipes I use a 250 ml cup, a 20 ml tablespoon, unsalted butter and 60g eggs. My oven is a conventional gas oven so if your oven is fan forced you may need to reduce the oven temperature by 20°C. 

Tropical Hummingbird Layer Cake, adapted from Belinda Jeffery’s Mix and Bake.
¾ cup SR flour 
¼ cup Plain flour 
pinch salt 
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon 
pinch ground nutmeg 
25g roasted macadamias, coarsely chopped 
1 egg 
½ cup caster sugar 
½ cup vegetable oil 
½ teaspoon vanilla extract 
⅓ cup canned crushed pineapple in natural juice, undrained 
⅔ cup mashed banana 

Cream Cheese Icing 
60g softened unsalted butter, diced
125 g softened cream cheese, diced
2 cups icing sugar, sifted
To decorate (optional)
Toasted macadamias coarsely chopped/passionfruit pulp and diced mango

Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F. Grease and line the base of a 18cm round cake tin with baking paper. Lightly dust the tin with flour.

Sift the flours, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg into a large bowl. Stir in the chopped macadamia nuts. In another bowl, beat the egg lightly with the sugar. Whisk in the oil and vanilla extract until well combined. Add the pineapple and mashed bananas and mix thoroughly. 

Pour the banana mixture into the flour mixture and stir them together to form a batter. If the batter is too thick, add a little more pineapple juice. Bake for 50 – 60 minutes or until a wooden skewer comes out clean. Cool the cake before turning out of the tin. Using a serrated knife, halve the cooled cake horizontally. Sandwich the two cakes together with about a third of the icing. Spread the remaining icing on top of the cake.

For icing, place the butter, cream cheese and icing sugar into the food processor and process until smooth before returning the mixture to the fridge to firm up.  

I decorated the cake with toasted macadamia nuts, diced mango and passionfruit pulp and took the cake into work keeping my fingers crossed that that the cake was edible. Thankfully cream cheese icing covers up a multitude of sins but next time I'll try and follow the recipe, exactly.

See you all again next week with some more baking from my kitchen.

Bye for now,


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